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How to Replace the Alternator in a Ford Explorer

by Contributor; Updated November 07, 2017

Items you will need

  • New alternator

  • Socket wrench set

  • Torque wrench

How to Replace the Alternator in a Ford Explorer. The Ford Explorer uses an alternator to run electrical devices in your vehicle while the engine is running. A voltage regulator ensures the voltage level remains constant and is usually part of the alternator assembly. You may need to replace the alternator if your battery continually runs down or your headlights become dimmer while the engine is running.

Determine which alternator your Ford Explorer will need. You'll want to be sure the new alternator is compatible with your Explorer's engine. Models built from 1991 to 1994 have a 4.0 L engine while 1995 to 2001 models add the option for a 5.0 L Windsor engine. Models made from 2000 to 2005 may be equipped with the 4.0 L Cologne or 4.6 L Modular engine.

Disconnect both battery cables with a socket wrench. Lower the tension on the front end accessory drive belt by rotating its tensioner counterclockwise. Remove the accessory drive belt.

Push aside the cover for the B+ terminal on the alternator so you can remove its nut. Disconnect the B+ terminal and both electrical connectors to the alternator.

Remove the mounting bolts on the alternator with a socket wrench and the alternator pulley, if needed. Take the alternator off the vehicle.

Install the new alternator assembly and reverse the removal procedure. Use a torque wrench to tighten the nut on the alternator pulley to 80 foot pounds if you removed it. Torque the mounting bolts to 35 foot pounds and tighten the alternator terminal nut to 80 inch pounds.

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